JT Torres

JT Torres: Conviction

The altar for San Lazaro and Chango, the orisha who walks with San Lazaro. The desserts are left as offerings for both spirits. My research in Cuba is impossible. I can use physical descriptions to illustrate those who became possessed for you readers. I can describe a young man convulsing, his body contorted on a […]

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JT Torres: Forbidden Worlds

Our host family gathered around the TV to watch Raul Castro announce the return of the Cuban spies, which would improve relations with the U.S. As my departure from Cuba approached, I experienced a sort of barotrauma, much like decompression sickness experienced by divers who resurface too fast. I needed to slowly ascend, slowly return

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JT Torres: En Trance

The first ceremony of the week-long Festival de San Lazaro. We were sitting at a brightly lit café in a neighborhood in Colón. The dirt streets stretched into darkness in each direction. Maybe two houses were lit; the rest faded into the night sky glowing impossibly clear constellations. This was my first dinner in Cuba.

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JT Torres: Performance Research

 The banner of “Secrets Under the Skin,” from Dr. Jill Flanders Crosby’s/University of Alaska’s .edu page.  Jill found me. This is an important distinction to make, she often reminds me. She’d read my MFA thesis, a novel about my grandmother’s life in Cuba—a life filled with spirits and ambiguous religious convictions. When she found me,

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